I keep thinking that Danny was the smart one this summer, she made a wise choice. Not that I really had a choice, or would have chosen to not see my oldest son, regardless of anything else. But we knew months before going into this summer that it would be a full and busy time, with very little rest or down time – and so, coming out of a year that was super successful but also super tiring after her years dealing with depression, our wise daughter knew she couldn’t head into next school year without a real and true summer BREAK. And so she made the hard choice, way back in January when we bought our plane tickets for June, that she’d stay home in Budapest with our dogs and Norbi’s mom, her Hungarian Grandma. Danny got to sleep in, read a gazillion books (seriously, her goal for the summer is 50 books, she’s almost at 40 with still three weeks of reading time left), eat the delicious food her Grandma fixed her, meet up with friends now and then when they were in the country, take naps, play some video games, etc… She looks great too, well rested, happy. Well read. And I’m waking up ready for a nap.
I know there’s some jet lag involved. Coming this direction is always harder – going west feels like staying up late, or pulling an all-nighter. Coming east just messes with your head and takes me days to recover from. I’ve also heard that ‘coming home’ is much harder to deal with than ‘going away’, you tend to hit the ground running wherever you’re going – full of things to do, places to be, foods to eat. I think I’m also dealing with emotional exhaustion. Possibly many years’ worth, but most recently I came alongside a dear friend who was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoid Leukemia in April, visiting her once a week in another Hungarian city. Marilyn went home to Jesus just days before we flew out to the US. My packing was in a blur, I’m still amazed I only forgot a couple things. We arrived in Colorado first and I’m so thankful for our initial ten days there, compared to the rest of our summer we didn’t do much, and I so needed that time to process and grieve. After ten days we headed for two weeks in California – most of that visit was full of family gatherings, work gatherings for Norbert and a couple down days. But through it all was the decision we made basically our first day there, confirming that we’ll head back there for a temporary extended stay of a couple years or so to be near my Grandma and our kids for a season. Moving ‘Home’ Again Big emotional stuff. And then we returned to Denver and jumped full swing into being there, something we didn’t really do in those first ten days – started seeing lots of friends and, biggest of all, began the huge yard transformation project that sort of consumed us for the remaining almost three weeks of our visit there. We ended our US visit with six days in Maine, with my parents and brother’s family there. We don’t get to Maine very often, and so each day was jammed packed with sight-seeing and just spending time with family, making the most of each moment. Again, not much down time. And while all this was happening in the US, our son Joshua has been in Austria and was communicating some big changes in his life – attending Bible College this fall in Italy, getting baptized – sort of major stuff.
And now I’m home….and trying to wrap my head around conversations and life decisions that have been happening all summer. I feel so behind in my thought processes – like I’m still way back in June trying to understand Marilyn’s final two months with us…while everyone else is here in August. And yeah, Danny’s relaxed summer sounds amazing now and I’m a bit jealous in hind-sight. Still, we did have some sweet and rare time with just our oldest son – our first time going to Disneyland with just one child, it was actually a relaxed and chill day, we knew by then we’d be back in just a year and none of us felt any need to ‘go on everything’. I’m so thankful for our time with Siah, and with the many other family we got to see this trip that we don’t always get to see – so glad I took lots of pictures, so I can relive the days that right now are sort of a blur. Maybe I have a bad case of Summer Overdose? Still, I’d love one more Coke Icee, to sip while I attempt to process and catch up with the world, and this time zone.